I am engaging in collaborative research with Geology and Astronomy departments at the University of Maryland, Texas Christian University, the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and the Mineral Sciences department at the Smithsonian Institution to determine the oxygen fugacities of meteorite parent bodies, correlate those fugacities with diagnostic spectral signatures in the visual and near-infrared spectrum, and then apply those findings to the asteroid belt. I am interested in understanding the distribution of oxygen and other major elements in the solar system during the formation of planetesimals and how that ultimately effected the formation of the different types of terrestrial planets.
I am also engaged in melting experiments with the Smithsonian Institution in an attempt to understand the geochemically anomalous Stannern-group eucites, which are enriched in incompatible elements, but decoupled from major elements. We have used these experiments to test the widely accepted model of petrogenesis, and our initial findings suggest that the model in inadequate. We hope to formulate a more complete model of Stannern-group petrogenesis, which will help us to understand the formational history of the eucrite parent body, presumably the asteroid 4-Vesta.